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Tamara, Counselor & Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1073
Experience:  20+ yrs Private Practice; Cert. Master Therapist; National Board Certified; APA Board Certified
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Hi, I have had problems nearly every day with my husband.

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Hi, I have had problems nearly every day with my husband. Since getting married in 1985 when we first lived together I got him to go to the doctor because of his weird behaviour. The doctor just shrugged it off and laughed. I have since taken him to the doctor where he saw a counsellor for numerous sessions but he just talked, nothing happened just that she said I was controlling him because I asked him to slow down as we had children in the car and he was going at 90mph just to go to the shops, from then on I have just heard 'Control control control' every time I try and ask him to do anything around the house. I have put up with this for over 20 years now, the house is falling to pieces, it looks like a junk yard outside, I have a huge box with a printer inside which is brand new sitting on the floor in our hall for 8 months, a new fridge in the drive for 6 months. I read an article about passive aggressive personality disorder and it was just so my husband, outbursts, demeaning. He has passive resistance to demands, procrastination, sulks, irritable, argues when asked to do something, works deliberately slowly and does a bad job or leaves it unfinished or leaves all the tools out, unjustified protests that others make unreasonable demands, claims to have forgotten obligations ie going out, picking up kids, rating own job performance much higher than others do, resenting useful suggestions, obstructing others by not doing their own job (I cant get the kids bikes or mine out of the garage as it is full of his junk, we cant go cycling now, I asked him to blow up my exercise ball so its harder, it was all ready with the pump right next to him but he didn't do it, all round the house things need his attention but he just plays cards or poker on his computer and then goes to his bedroom without even saying goodnight to me or the kids. He criticizes and scorns those in authority, ie his old bosses. He now works for himself and says word of mouth is best but he doesn't have much work and won't advertise or put his phone number on his van. He does favours for his friends when he tells me he is working ie digging out a pond for his friends children but he won't do it for us, we even have the plastic pond! He does favours because you never know when you might need a favour, no-one ever comes round to help me or do us a favour! I am hurting, feel a wreck and tired, where do I go from here? Thanks, Lou
Hi there. I'm really sorry to hear about your situation with your husband. It sounds like a pretty dysfunctional marriage. My suggestion would be that you get some therapy for yourself so you can figure out why you are still in this relationship. Stop trying to figure him out and change him - that is obviously not getting you anywhere. So your only alternative is to seek some help for yourself and figure out how to deal with him, or how to leave the marriage. Those are your options. He isn't going to change.

Best wishes, and please let me know if I can answer any further questions. Tamara

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Hi Tamara,

I accept totally he won't change but the more I read the more he has passive aggresive personality disorder. I actually feel relieved and happy now that I know he can't help it and he isn't trying to be nasty to me. I know I need help but I thought that you could help and not pass me onto someone else, they just sit and listen without any suggestions on how I can deal with him when situations arise. I have spent thousands on pounds just for a therapist to nod their head and listen for an hour. I want knowledge and feedback ie do I tell him or show him or do I not mention it? Will it affect the children, are they better without him living with us, I don't want them to grow up thinking this is normal. Do I tell them? Thanks, Louise

Hi again. I'm sorry that has been your experience with therapy. That certainly is discouraging and I can understand why you would not want to spend more money in that direction. However, please know that that is NOT typical and certainly not how I practice.

Dealing with personality disorders is complicated and there is much more information available than I could possibly give you in this forum. So I'm going to recommend a couple of books for you. The first is Living with the Passive-Aggressive Man: Coping with Hidden Aggression - From the Bedroom to the Boardroom by Scott Wetzler. The second is The Manipulative Man: Identify His Behavior, Counter the Abuse, Regain Control by Dorothy McCoy. Both of these will provide you with more information, as well as ideas on how to deal with the behavior.

It does help to know that the problem is him and not you. But it is also important to figure out how to interact with him differently in order to reduce the effects of his behavior. Yes this behavior will affect the children - there is no way for it not to. But they need to know that they are not the problem - he is. Navigating all this is where a competent therapist could be of great benefit (I know that hasn't been your experience).

Best wishes, and please let me know if I can answer any further questions. Tamara

Tamara and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thank you Tamara, it has been a long long journey but thank you for your suggestions and I will try another psychiatrist, it costs so much and when he isn't bringing in enough money to live on and I am living on my credit cards it is very difficult. I pay all the bills as he spends it on stupid things for himself, he buys stupid food because it was reduced ie clams, crayfish, game bird, it doesn't feed the family and costs a fortune anyway, he thinks he is saving money but it drains the finances, I have again gone to the fridge to find more stupid food that only he likes, seafood medley with octopus. Anyway, I know now, its not me going round the bend anymore. Thanks for your help.


Hi Louise. Good luck with everything. Just a thought - you may want to try a psychologist or a psychotherapist instead of a psychiatrist. Psychiatrists generally are trained best for the medication side of mental health, and sometimes are not so good at the therapy side. I'd love to see you find someone you can talk with about all of this. You certainly need the support and guidance! Best wishes. Tamara
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hi Tamara,
I am making plans for after Christmas. I know there is nothing left for us, maybe a friendship down the line as it was before. It was great before I had to live with him! I can do so much more without him at home. He goes out to Samura 4 nights a week, on Wednesday its football and on Friday night I gave him a lift to see an Elvis impersonator. I was taxi service for the children and got home at 9.15 cold and tired on Friday. On Saturday its a nice evening for tv, ballroom dancing, X Factor and Im a Celebrity. I got cuddled up to enjoy a relaxing evening for a change, and he came in and kept saying I was monopolising the tv, rubbish, crap, every half an hour I had to put up with him saying how crap the tv was I was watching. He plays games on his computer, plays the XBox and has a large number of DVD's in his room. I don't have time to waste and I so needed to unwind and let my mind just relax and drift away from everyday pressures. So I have had enough, he is going to go, my mind is made up and I am making plans in my head for next year.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Hi Tamara

I have been asking him to leave and he had agreed, he told the children and then I heard through my son that he has no intention of leaving. I now believe he is a pathological liar, he tells more lies to cover up his deceptions. The printer box is still on the landing, the hedges haven't been cut for two years and now he has tried to cut a small part the garden is covered in 8' of growth from two weeks ago. It is now killing the grass and he told me he would clear it up this weekend, as I was out taking my daughter to her class I came home to find he had gone out. He didn't return till 6pm with my son. My son said he had taken him to go fishing, then found the tide out so he went into the pub until it had come in. Then found there was no activity so did 10 minutes of work on a call out. I found out it was his favourite team playing so he obviously watched the game, he returned after it had finished. The whole day of doing nothing. I now have an appointment with a Solicitor but need to know if I can prove he has a disorder, I have gone through years of hell and verbal abuse and I don't want to give him more than I have to. He has just been a lazy liar without contributing anything, no money, no love, no caring. Sorry but I am angry.



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